Members of our Board of Trustees include arts, business, and social leaders from Maine, New York, and locations further afield. These dedicated volunteers ensure that the Festival operates to best serve all of its participants and audiences.
Board of Trustees
Lorna BROWN FLYNN, Chair
After returning from a three-year expat stint in Moscow, Russia, Lorna and her husband moved to Harpswell, Maine. Prior to Russia, Lorna ran the New York office of a Los Angeles literary agency and later was the Director of Education for a sexual assault crisis center in Connecticut.
No matter where she lived, Lorna has taken advantage of the available musical offerings, from the accessible NY Philharmonic and Julliard String Quartet, to the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, to the local high school orchestra. At the same time, Lorna volunteered at nonprofits in the communities she lived, even in Moscow where she helped the local domestic violence agency. When she settled in Maine, Lorna subscribed to the Festival and soon after volunteered in the admissions office. For the past sixteen years, Lorna has evaluated financial aid applications and helped with student housing.
When the time was right, Lorna accepted nomination to the Festival Board of Trustees. You can find Lorna and her husband at every Festival concert during the summer, as well as at most of the masterclasses and lectures. Lorna loves seeing the Festival branch out in new directions and knows she’s not the only one because of the exponential growth of student applications over the past few years.
SUSAN CHADIMA, VICE CHAIR
Growing up in Iowa, Susan was exposed to music from a young age, attending local symphonyconcerts with my parents, studying piano and playing viola through school years, and continuing intermittently as an adult. After graduating veterinary college at Iowa State University, she and her husband, Mike Steitzer, moved to Maine where they raised their family, and pursued their professional careers, Susan’s in veterinary medicine. Susan founded the Androscoggin Animal Hospital in Topsham, enjoying wonderful relationships with clients and their animals over the years, and selling the practice in the fall of 2015. In addition to clinical practice, Susan has been very involved in the organizational and regulatory sides of the veterinary profession serving at state, regional, and national levels on multiple councils and committees, as well as local civic organizations. Beginning in 2005, Susan’s professional veterinary interests expanded internationally. Susan has spent more than 14 years working primarily in Afghanistan as a clinician, consultant, and spent 2 1/2 years as the Team Leader for a project funded by the European Union working directly with the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture’s Directorate of Animal Health. She continues to work in Afghanistan on a part time basis, and is also pursuing a Master’s Degree in Veterinary Preventive Medicine. A unique part of her Afghanistan experiences has been limited, but meaningful, involvement and support for the Afghanistan National Institute of Music (ANIM).
Music, and specifically classical music, has enriched Susan’s life since her Iowa childhood, and been a constant companion, although usually as a member of the audience, or listening to streaming services, radio, cd’s and even old records. Yet nothing replaces the vibrant experience of live performance. Attending Festival concerts has been part of Susan’s summers in Maine since the 80’s, including selling lemonade at intermission of the concerts when they were held at First Parish Church. The growth of the Festival, the focus on world class musicianship, and the commitment to educating student musicians continues to inspire. The great success of the Festival is a tribute to outstanding artistic vision that has been undergirded by the equally important organizational structure and fiscal guidance by the Board of Trustees.
Charlie Johnson, TREASURER
Orr’s Island, Maine
Charlie Johnson is a native Californian and a graduate of Harvey Mudd College and Stanford Business School, currently semi-retired with over 30 years’ experience in senior financial and IT positions in public and private companies. Charlie is Past President of the Orr’s and Bailey Islands Volunteer Fire Department and the Harpswell Heritage Land Trust. Charlie is currently on the board of Forum Foundation (education in rural Panama) and Healthy Learners (schoolbased health care in Zambia).
Although not a musician, music has always been a part of Charlie’s life. He studied piano as a child and played clarinet in middle school orchestra. Charlie was introduced to choral music by his late wife, Carolyn, and the wonders of the double bass when he courted his Jean over a decade ago. Charlie has been attending BMIF concerts since moving to Orr’s Island in 2000. In addition to supporting the Festival financially, Charlie and Jean have been hosting Kurt Muroki and his bass students in their home every summer for the past 10 years.
Douglas Collins, Secretary
Doug Collins’ career as an actuary started in the Hartford, CT area, where he grew up, and took him to assignments in London and Bermuda. He and his wife Jane moved from Bermuda to Harpswell when he retired in 2010. Since retirement, Doug has kept busy chairing actuarial committees on climate change, and volunteering for SCORE.
Doug’s only organized music experience was playing in his high school band, but braces made becoming a decent trumpeter a challenge. More recently, he has taken many music history courses on CD and tried his hand at composition while auditing Music Theory 101 at Bowdoin. Throughout life, listening to all types of music has brought much joy.
Doug has been an active supporter of the Festival and believes Midcoast Maine is incredibly fortunate to host one of the best summer music programs in the world.
Peter Bachrach grew up in Brunswick, graduated from Brunswick High School in 1966, and like many classmates at the time, left the state for college, graduate school, and employment opportunities elsewhere.
Peter worked for two health planning agencies in Wisconsin and then began a career in international health working for the Development Center of the OECD in Paris (1977), for an NGO in New York and Washington (1978-2002), and as a freelance consultant based in Washington (2003-present). His professional career has taken him to forty countries in Africa and Asia, and he has lived in Cameroon and Mali. Peter also taught graduate seminars at Columbia and Georgetown Universities. He is now mostly retired but consults occasionally and volunteers for non-profits in DC and Brunswick (Pejepscot History Center).
Since 1970, Peter and his wife Susan have returned almost every summer for brief visits to the family home on Minott Shore. In 2010 they acquired the property from Peter’s siblings, and they now enjoy a range of outdoor activities and visits from their children, extended family, and friends over the summer and fall months.
From its inception, the Bowdoin International Music Festival has been an important part of the Bachrach family summer schedule. Peter’s mother was an early chairperson of the Board, his father hardly ever missed a performance over forty years or so, and family members contribute annually to the continued success of the Festival.
Robert C. Briselli
West Bath, Maine
Classical music has been ever present in Bob’s life. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Bob lived steps from the Curtis Institute of Music where his father, Iso, graduated and then embarked on a solo violin career.
Bob studied violin and piano for many years, but ultimately decided to pursue science and technology, earning Chemistry and Engineering degrees from MIT. Upon graduation, Bob began a career entirely with the DuPont Company, developing new environmentally-friendly paints for autos. Later in a business-improvement capacity, he advised or led teams in marketing, strategy, and customer quality assurance as a Senior Consultant.
In retirement, Bob volunteers with community non-profits tackling food insecurity and homelessness, as well as nature preservation and child development. When not volunteering, Bob enjoys traveling, hiking, and playing bridge. He and his wife, Carol, a professional violist, have enjoyed summers in West Bath since 2013.
A subscriber to The New Yorker from age 13, this California native knew that NYC was where she wanted to be and, after graduation from the University of Southern California and graduate work at Stanford, that was where she went. Working an entire career in publishing, beginning with…The New Yorker…yes! Then came travel magazines and being in at the creation of Bon Appetit as Managing Editor, remaking Cuisine magazine as Editor in Chief, editing books on food, wine and entertaining at HarperCollins, and lots of freelance writing for newspapers and magazines. When she landed in Maine in retirement, the Bowdoin International Music Festival and its talented students have been the major, and deeply rewarding, focus of volunteer life.
Before he retired in 2012, Rol was senior vice-president of Supply Chain at L.L. Bean, Inc. where he worked since 1982. Prior to living in Maine, he lived in Africa for several years. Rol has served on local, state, national, and industry boards. In 1989 he took an extended sabbatical from L.L. Bean to work on state and national initiatives to improve math and science education in public schools. During that time he implemented a $10 million National Science Foundation grant for the state of Maine. He served on the National Alliance for Math and Science Education and on the executive committee of the Maine Math and Science Alliance. Rol is a former member of the Town of Brunswick planning board, is on the board of Mid Coast Health Services, and is a past president of the Bowdoin International Music Festival, on whose board he has served in many capacities since 1998. He is currently chairman of the board of the Appalachian Mountain Club.
Dr. BERNARD GIVERTZ
Dr. Bernard Givertz is a retired cardiologist, the founder of Maine Cardiology Associates and of Cardiovascular Consultants of Maine. He was Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Vermont Medical School and President of the Maine Heart Association. Bernard was a member of the Boards of Temple Beth El and the Southern Maine Jewish Community Alliance; he serves on the Boards of the Portland Conservatory of Music, and Cedars Nursing and Senior Citizens complex, including The Atrium and The Osher Inn. He is a devoted supporter of classical music, and plays the clarinet.
Peter Griffin retired to the Cundys Harbor area of Harpswell in 2006 after a thirty-year career at a privately-owned global commodity merchant and trading company. He served his final eight years as President of its North American operations. Earlier, Peter served three years as Instructor in Economics at Washington’s Whitman College and five years as an employee of a large accounting firm in New York. Peter is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He also serves on the boards of the Holbrook Community Foundation in Cundys Harbor and the Friends of the Kotzschmar Organ in Portland. He is an amateur pipe organist.
Sam Hayward has been the founding chef and a co-owner of Fore Street restaurant in Portland, Maine, since its opening in 1996. He’s also a co-owner of Scales on Maine Wharf, just opened on Portland’s waterfront. Sam studied double-bass and choral music performance in college, but found his vocation cooking and presenting the foods of Maine at 22 Lincoln Restaurant in Brunswick and the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport before collaborating in the creation of Fore Street and Scales. Sam is the first Maine recipient of the James Beard Foundation award for Best Chef – Northeast in 2004. Sam has served on the Board of Trustees of the Bowdoin International Music Festival since 1991.
Cristle Collins Judd
Bronxville, New York
Cristle Collins Judd was appointed the 11th president of Sarah Lawrence College in 2017. In June of 2021, as she completed the fourth year of her first five-year term as president of Sarah Lawrence, the College’s Board of Trustees reappointed Judd to a second term, noting the board’s deep admiration and gratitude for Judd’s visionary leadership and considerable achievements on behalf of the College. A native Texan, Judd earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in oboe performance and musicology, followed by graduate work at King’s College, University of London, from which she holds master’s and PhD degrees in music theory. In 1993, Judd joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania, where she rose through the faculty ranks and was the first woman tenured in the music department. In 2006, she was appointed dean for academic affairs and professor of music at Bowdoin College, where she served for nine years. From Bowdoin she was recruited to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation as a senior program officer. A highly regarded scholar and award-winning teacher, Judd’s research on the music of the Renaissance and the history of music theory is widely published and she is a sought-after guest speaker. She has received both of the major scholarly awards in her discipline: the Emerging Scholar Award and the Wallace Berry Award from the Society for Music Theory. With her late husband, Robert Judd, she has three daughters: Sarah, Hannah, and Katie.
Kent Mitchell and his wife Natalie began spending summers in Maine in 2004 after retiring from ownership of a lamp manufacturing business in Vermont. As they were getting familiar with the area, they went to a few Festival concerts and soon became enthusiastic attendees of faculty and student concerts as well as masterclasses. What is most exciting to Kent is the “learning” that one sees occurring on the stage during a masterclass. Kent is a graduate of DePauw University and the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. He was a member of the Vermont Business Roundtable for 15 years, serving on its board for six years. In Vermont, Kent enjoys singing in a church choir and a community chorus and delivering for Meals on Wheels. He loves harvesting firewood and sawlogs on his home property, and spending time with his family, especially his two grandchildren.
JAMES T. MORGAN
James T. Morgan was a long-time colleague of the late Sarah Caldwell, one of the most innovative opera directors of her time and the first woman to conduct at the Metropolitan Opera. In addition to various administrative positions at the Opera Company of Boston, he worked with Ms. Caldwell on projects and festivals in the Philippines, Russia, China, and Wolf Trap near Washington, DC.
Jim moved to Maine in 1999 and became Director of Development and Marketing for PCA Great Performances, now known as Portland Ovations. He now sits on its board as vice president as well as the board of the Bowdoin International Music Festival, having served as chair from 2010 to 2014.
Daniel Nitsch became Executive Director of the Bowdoin International Music Festival in 2016 after joining as Director of Admissions and Operations in 2015. Since his arrival, the Festival has doubled student applications, expanded community engagement to include collaborations with museums, sports teams, breweries, and schools, and launched a streaming service that broadcasts free live performances to more than 60,000 annual viewers in nearly 100 countries. During the Coronavirus pandemic, Nitsch and Festival staff launched a free online education program in ’20, navigated a return to in-person education in ’21, and returned to full programming in ’22. Looking to the future, Nitsch and Festival trustees have renewed the organization’s commitment to student scholarship growth, and have implemented new fundraising strategies to support equitable access to Festival programs.
Nitsch previously served at Yellow Barn Music Festival where he oversaw growth in applications and served on the development team of the Music Haul, a mobile concert hall which brings performances and music education to urban neighborhoods, city centers, parks, and grammar schools. Nitsch previously held positions with the Cleveland Orchestra, Music@Menlo, American Bach Soloists, and the Oberlin Artist Recital Series. Nitsch served as assistant conductor of the Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra and has performed as both a soloist and in ensembles.
A native of Rochester, NY, Nitsch holds a B.Mus in classical guitar performance from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and a Master’s in Public Policy, Planning, and Management from the Muskie School of Public Service.
Nitsch lives in Brunswick with his wife Laura del Sol Jiménez and their son Martin.
Barbara and her husband are returning to Brunswick after living in Claremont CA for over a decade. While living in Claremont, a city located in Los Angeles County, Barbara supported the Los Angeles Philharmonic Symphony as a Board member, Vice President for Fundraising and President of the symphony’s Affiliate Foothill Philharmonic Committee. Barbara interacted with LA Phil musicians, the Financial Friends Campaign and YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles). Each fall Barbara dedicated three weeks to spreading music education, enhancing the LA Phil’s reputation and introducing orchestral instruments to over 1,000 local third graders with the goal of inspiring them to play an instrument when they entered the fourth grade.
Prior to living in California, Barbara lived in Brunswick, Maine for over 30 years, where Barbara was a volunteer in local service and arts organizations. She co-founded Home to Home with the Sixth District Court and The American Association of University Women (AAUW) supporting the courts to provide a safe place for separated and divorced parents to exchange their children for visitation. Barbara is a long time member of AAUW serving as President and numerous other offices.
Barbara grew up attending Musical Theatre and fondly remembers her first Broadway experiences: Camelot starring Julie Andrews and The Sound of Music starring Mary Martin! In the 90’s Barbara was a Maine State Music Theatre Trustee and served as President, creating the Show Sponsor program.
In addition, Barbara produced Senior Lifestyle, a Senior Spectrum cable television program viewed in six Maine counties. She was an active member of the Curtis Memorial Library Board of Directors serving on the Development Committee during the Library renovation in the 1990’s. As a volunteer for the Music Festival, Barbara worked to develop sponsors and an endowment plan to ensure the future of the Festival.
Barbara believes in the value of volunteering for the betterment of the community and enriching the lives of its residents. The BIMF provides gifted young musicians the opportunity to study and perform with world class artists, and audiences enjoy classical music performed to the highest artistic standards. Barbara is honored to volunteer for this renowned institution, the Bowdoin International Music Festival.
Dr. Hugh Phelps
Hugh Phelps was a radiation oncologist for 30 years at Maine Med and CMMC in Lewiston until retiring in 2003. He served on the Freeport School Committee and Town Council in the 1980’s. He has been on the Bowdoin International Music Festival board since the early 1990’s, including a stint as board chair. Hugh sings regularly with the Bowdoin College chorus and Rachmaninoff chorus and has sung in the past with the Choral Arts Society and Oratorio Chorale. He currently also serves on board of the Pine Tree Society.
Takoma Park, Maryland
Elliot Rosen’s family relationship with the Festival goes back to the mid-1970’s when his parents discovered that there was classical music available 15 minutes from their cabin in West Bath. The Festival became an important part of his parents’ summer life in Maine for the next 35 years. Elliot joined the Board in 2011 and was elected Chairman in the 2016 Festival Season. Elliot splits his time between Washington, DC/Maryland, where he has lived and worked most of his adult life, and Maine where he tries to come as often as possible. Elliot is a serial arts organization board member. Before joining the Festival Board he was a long time member and Board Chair of the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, a contemporary dance company. Elliot is a beginner-beginner cellist although certain Kaplan Fellows have kindly told him that he is a “no excuses accepted” cellist.
Mount Rainier, Maryland
Richard Scerbo is the Artistic Planning Program Director for Music and the Director of the National Orchestral Institute + Festival (NOI+F) at the University of Maryland’s Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center. In these dual roles, and as part of a nationally unique multi-curatorial programming team, he works to cultivate artistic experiences in the areas of jazz, classical, contemporary, and emergent areas of music performance for the University of Maryland campus and surrounding community.
For over twelve years, Scerbo has worked in various capacities to oversee the artistic growth of NOI+F and its innovative training curriculum in orchestral performance, conductorless chamber orchestras, professional development, and community engagement. For his work with NOI+F, he was selected as an Innovator by Musical America and is profiled in Musical America’s Innovators: 30 Professionals of the Year. Selected from hundreds of performing arts professionals, Musical America Professionals of the Year are innovative, creative, and forward- thinking arts leaders. Under his leadership, NOI+F has created vital partnerships with organizations such as Naxos Records, Wolf Trap Opera, the Sphinx Organization, and many others. Their ongoing effort to record works by American composers in partnership with Naxos Records was recognized by a GRAMMY nomination for “Best Orchestral Performance” for works by Steven Stucky, John Harbison and Carl Ruggles. Most recently, Scerbo led the festival in its appointment of Marin Alsop as its first Music Director.
An active member of the arts community, Scerbo has served on panels with the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, adjudicated chamber music competitions for the Montpelier Arts Center and judged orchestra competitions for the Howard County (MD) Public Schools. He is currently an advisory board member of the American Composers Alliance and Co- Artistic Director of Jackson Hole Chamber Music. As an educator of all ages, he is the Principal Conductor of the DC Youth Orchestra and former Music Director of the NIH Community Orchestra, a 70-member volunteer orchestra drawn from the health, science, and research professionals across the region.
Trained as a conductor and bassoonist, Scerbo maintains an active connection to the performance world. He is the founding Artistic Director of Inscape Chamber Orchestra where he has recorded numerous albums of American music, including the GRAMMY-nominated album Sprung Rhythm. A passionate advocate for new music, he has commissioned over forty works from emerging American composers. In recent seasons, he has led a North American premiere by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies; conducted chamber operas ranging from Bernstein to Stravinsky and a pantomime by Manuel de Falla; and worked with Mason Bates’s Jukebox series at the Kennedy Center where he conducted shows with German IDM duo Mouse on Mars, techno legend Juan Atkins, and electronica artists from Thievery Corporation.
Richard Scerbo is a proud alumnus of the University of Maryland where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music and a Master’s degree in Orchestral Conducting.
Deborah (Debbie) Schall is a long-time fan and supporter of the Bowdoin International Music Festival. In 2019, Debbie had the enormous privilege of sponsoring a student for the first time. Debbie also served as a Festival volunteer, co-chairing the annual scholarship gala for many years.
Debbie’s previous board service includes president, treasurer, editor, and webmaster for the American Association of University Women. She served as board president for the Curtis Memorial Library and Independence Association, as well as editor and marketing chair for Midcoast Hospital’s Merrymeeting Merry Eating Cookbook. Debbie also has volunteered with Home to Home, a place for separated or divorced parents to exchange children in a safe environment.
In addition to board service, Debbie has received appointments to Maine State Committees including the Development and Disabilities Council at the Bureau of Mental Retardation of the Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Community Advisory Board for the Pineland Consent Decree.
Ken hails from Worcester, Massachusetts where his formative years at home were filled with classical music. His mother played piano on occasion and hosted a weekly opera radio show on the local public radio station. His dad enjoyed playing clarinet in a local orchestra. The family had an extensive record collection and Ken would sift through old 78’s and LPs of symphonies and solo vignettes and cue them up on the old Victrola. Every fall the Detroit Symphony would take up residence for a week and visit the schools during the day and give concerts in the evenings giving him the opportunity to see and hear musical legends no longer with us today. In addition to the classical music presence in the household, he was greatly influenced by his older brother’s interest in the budding folk music scene of the early 60’s; particularly old time Appalachian folk music.
After serving in the US Coast Guard, Ken began a career in the electrical trades in the Boston area. It was during that time that he purchased his first violin/fiddle and expanded his interest in the traditional American folk music genre. His musical interests in southern Appalachian music morphed to New England traditional music playing for contra dances and various festivals as a member of The Canterbury Country Dance Orchestra and other dance bands. That led him to move from Boston to the rich and diverse musical area of New Hampshire, the Monadnock region. There he ran his own electrical contracting business and was the chief electrician for the Keene School District. The origins of traditional New England music led him to his current vocation of playing and performing traditional Irish fiddle/dance music.
While his musical interests changed so did his work interests. Returning to school for an engineering degree, that led him to Maine to work for Fairchild Semiconductor and National Semiconductor in test development and product engineering at their logic division in South Portland. After 15 years in the semiconductor industry it was back to school to pursue accounting. Ken then was proprietor of his own tax service company, Brickyard Cove Tax, LLC before retiring in 2021 after 15 years.
Ken now spends time pursuing his interests in Irish trad music, classical music, boating on Casco Bay, gardening and spending time with his wife Judy and grandchildren.
New York, New York
After graduating from Mount Holyoke College, Claudia Spies worked in academic administration, first at the University of Maine in Farmington, then at Harvard University, after receiving an Ed.M at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Moving to NYC, she worked in account management at the advertising agencies Benton and Bowles and Ogilvy and Mather. Having lived in Europe for 25 years, first in Berlin, Germany and then London, England, Claudia and her husband, Michael now reside in New York City.
Claudia grew up in Brunswick, and now enjoys spending the summers with her husband and two sons in Harpswell.
West Bath, Maine
Susanne Stover is an experienced Chief Financial Officer and business consultant with over 30 years of experience, including 10 years as a CFO. Stover is currently a CFO consultant and Executive Coach, working with companies including IT by Design, Build It, and Johnny Rockets. Her last full time professional position was as the CFO and SVP of the New York Racing Association, a $2B handle horse racing and entertainment company.
A Certified Public Accountant, Stover began her career as an auditor at KPMG in Boston and later joined The Walt Disney Company, based in California. Subsequently, she held positions as Vice President of Finance with Time Warner, Vice president of Finance with the Decurion Corporation, Controller at California Pizza Kitchen, and CFO of Rosa Mexicano Restaurants. Stover was a Board member for the Belmont Child Care Association, a nonprofit in NY where she was the Chair of the Finance and Development committees.
Stover is married to Eric Freeman and lives with him and their cat, Maxie Marie on the New Meadows Lake in West Bath, Maine. She has strong family ties to Maine going back to the 1700’s and has enjoyed living here since 2017 after living in the NYC, Los Angeles, and Boston areas. Stover also owns an island in the New Meadows River, which has been a family vacation spot her whole life. Stover loves art, music, reading, crafts, kayaking, and hiking.
dominique van de stadt
Paradise Valley, Arizona
Dominique van de Stadt worked in journalism (World Press Review, The Wall Street Transcript, Harper’s Magazine); publishing (Williams and Wilkins, Waverly Press); public relations (Johns Hopkins Health Systems) and translation services (Oxfam, Berlitz, Translingua) for 15 years after finishing her studies. Subsequently she became a dedicated community volunteer while raising four children, Milena, Adrian, Stefan and Flavia, with her husband, Octavio Pajaro.
She has enjoyed the privilege of serving on the boards and special committees of schools and non-profit music organizations in Florida (Jacksonville Country Day School, Episcopal High School, Jacksonville Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony Youth Orchestra, Ritz Chamber Players); Alabama (Alabama Symphony, Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra, Scrollworks, Harvard Interviewing Committee, The Altamont School) and Arizona (Red Rocks Music Festival, Phoenix Youth Symphony, Harvard Interviewing Committee, MusicaNova Orchestra, Phoenix Ivy Council). She has also served on the parent committees of the Sphinx Organization in Detroit and The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. She is one of many parents happy to have served as a “team advisor” for Amy Nathan’s book, The Music Parents’ Survival Guide. A dual Dutch and U.S. citizen, Dominique grew up in Brazil, Angola, Argentina, Turkey and various European countries before coming to the US. She received a BA in History and Literature from Harvard and an MS in Journalism from Columbia.
Bowdoin International Music Festival has been Dominique’s favorite music festival for many years, as three of the Pajaro-van de Stadt children have attended, loved, and benefitted from the Festival for the past 10 years: Milena, violin and viola—currently violist with the Dover Quartet; Stefan, guitar—currently pursuing a singer-songwriter degree at the LA College of Music; Flavia, violin—currently a student at the Peabody Conservatory.
For the past 30 years, Dena have been a producer of concerts. It began shortly after she left Canada in 1971. Upon her arrival in Washington DC she became one of the very first producers at National Public Radio (NPR) and produced over 100 interviews primarily in the Arts and Human Interest features. She was on the original team that created “All Things Considered.”
During that time, she married and moved to New York City where she continued as a stringer for NPR and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). Upon their return to Washington, there were no interesting openings at NPR. She was offered a position at The Smithsonian Institution as the Director of Lectures, Seminars and Special Events.
In Washington, D.C., there is the historic C&O Canal with a walking path which she loved to visit. At one spot on the Canal, she strongly felt that music should be played there and could envision concerts on that site. She approached Mobil Oil Corporation and asked them if they would sponsor a free concert series in this venue. They were receptive and “Concerts on the Canal” became a successful summer Sunday afternoon series from 1980 to 2010. In the early 90’s, Mobil Oil purchased a large plot of land to develop Reston Town Center. They asked Dena to create another outdoor concert series which she produced on Saturday evenings throughout the summer. She was the producer from 1990–2018. As the producer of both concert series, Dena selected the performers, negotiated their contracts, hired the sound engineers, and served as the Master of Ceremonies for the concerts. The attendance at the Reston Series averaged between 3,000 and 5,000 people.
A new museum “National Museum of Women in the Arts” was in its initial stages and Dena was asked to be their Director of Development through their Capital Campaign. She successfully raised $6 million over 18 months. After reaching her goal and becoming familiar with the architects who participated in the competition to be the museum designer, she was recruited by one of them to join their firm and become their Director of Marketing. After 6 years of working with them, Dena was approached by the headquarters of the American Institute of Architects in Washington, DC and was offered a position as Director of International Relations.
After several years, Dena decided to open her own interior design firm, DENA VERRILL INTERIORS. She and her husband retired and sold their summer house on the island of Islesboro. They moved to Brunswick 3 years ago and they are very much enjoying their time in this beautiful area of Maine.
Susan Weems is founder (2010) and president of Brunswick Public Art. She has led this organization to complete 15 public art projects of various materials and sizes, created by diverse artists, and located within the downtown area, Brunswick Landing and at a local primary school. Brunswick Public Art (BPA)is now working on its largest project to date, a mural at Cabot Mill. One goal of BPA is to include many different groups, from the Brunswick Community, in various public art projects.
Prior to her efforts with BPA, she directed two Regional Arts Programs for high school and middle school students. From 1998 – 2002, she directed the Regional Arts program for the Capital Area which included Gardiner, Augusta, Winthrop, Readfield and Hallowell high school students. In 2000, she organized a similar program for the Mid-Coast area which included Freeport, Bath, Topsham and Brunswick high school students and then evolved to include middle school students. This program ended in 2012, primarily due to budget constraints on public schools. A major goal of these programs was to create art centered community-based learning opportunities for students.
In 1980 she started her own Interior Plantscaping business (interior plants in office settings), which currently is in its 40th year of operation. The main goal of this business has been to connect office employees with the “gifts” that plants offer the environment, inside and out.
In 1963 she graduated from Wheelock College with a BS in education and in 1996 with a Masters in Education from University of Southern Maine with a focus on Community-based Learning at the secondary level. She is a former Town Councilor of Hallowell, Maine, where she and her family lived prior to moving to Brunswick. Susan has lived in Brunswick since 1987, with her husband. She has two adult sons.
She is an avid gardener, reader, student of Tai Chi, and classical music lover. She has also hosted female international scholarship students from Bowdoin College and Bowdoin International Music Festival pianists for almost twenty years.
Rochester, New York
David Ying concertizes widely, both in traditional performances from Carnegie Hall to the Sydney Opera House, and in unusual presentations beyond the concert hall. Cellist of the Grammy Award-winning Ying Quartet, the Quartet’s wide-ranging career and interests have led them to the White House as well as to juvenile prisons, and from farm towns to urban community centers. Their performing collaborators range from eminent musicians such as pianist Menahem Pressler, to folk musician Mike Seeger, to dancers, actors, magicians, computers and even Chinese chefs. Mr. Ying can also be heard on the Ying Quartet’s enthusiastically received recordings.
As solo cellist, he has been prizewinner in the Naumburg International Violincello Competition and the Washington International Competition. Mr. Ying has also been active as a recitalist with his wife, pianist Elinor Freer, and together they directed the Skaneateles Festival.
David Ying is the Artistic Director of the Bowdoin International Music Festival.
Rochester, New York
Phillip Ying performs regularly across the United States, Europe, and Asia. He recently won a Grammy Award for his work with the Ying and Turtle Island String Quartets, and is a recipient of the Naumburg Award for chamber music. Mr. Ying has also been presented numerous times in recital and as a soloist with orchestras. With the Ying Quartet, he maintains a vital interest in new music. He has been recorded by Telarc, Quartz, EMI, Albany, and Elektra.
In addition to performing, Mr. Ying is committed to presenting the arts in creative, unexpected, and diverse ways. In 1992, he received a two-year grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to promote chamber music in rural Iowa. Since that time, he continues to be involved in many other projects designed to explore expanded performance concepts as well as the educational and community-building potential of classical music in cities and towns across the United States
Phillip Ying is the Artistic Director of the Bowdoin International Music Festival.